You asked, I answered.
While I clearly don’t have the answer to all of life’s questions, I do have the answer to a few. Yay! (#winning)
More specifically, I have answers to questions that our community members asked about Saskatchewan, before I left on my road trip this summer.
Now that I’m back, here is my attempt to answer these questions! Curious? Check out the questions and answers below:
- What are Saskatchewan women most proud of? - Adrienne (@adrienneperrot)
- I’ve found that Saskatchewan women are most proud of 1) their families, 2) their careers, or what they’re creating, and 3) themselves. These women are bold, badass, and doing amazing work...but they’re also extraordinarily humble. Many women that I met needed some encouragement to speak about their successes. I hear ya, sister. But I think it’s time we blow our humbleness up, start to prop each other up, and own our brilliance. #womensupportingwomen, heck yes.
- Where is the best place to see a sunset? - Linda Yip (@theadmingap)
- Ooh. Great question. To be honest, I think great sunsets are seen all over this ‘land of living skies.’ But the best one that I saw? While sitting on the patio of a B&B outside Pangman, SK...while drinking a beer. The wide open sky, and the fact that I was facing west, helped immensely. Heehee. :)
- What are the best coffee places? - Ashley (@pash_wells)
- The best I came across were the ones where I actually met the kickass owners. These three women actually hosted Sask Sisterhood events, so I ADORE them. They are (in no particular order):
- BasketFull Gifts (Lucky Lake; Laurie Carter)
- FUEL (Yorkton; Kelcey Haracen)
- The Sweet Cup (Tisdale; Andrea Lutz)
- Where are the best book stores? - Cassandra (@girlseekingjoy)
- Damn! I did not get a chance to even get to a bookstore! Considering I’m now writing a book, I wish I would have. But this trip turned out to be ALL about the people: the event hosts, the panel speakers, the event attendees. But if you know a great bookstore in Saskatchewan (I know of McNally Robinson and Indigo...I need to expand my horizons!), let us know in the comments below!
- What the best couples retreats? - Kimberly (@k.kthorlakson)
- To be honest, this may not have been on my rader as I was simply looking for a cowboy to hang out with. Haha. If I would have found a cowboy, I likely would have looked more in-depth at couples retreats. But! I did visit Manitou Springs (glorious hot springs!) for the first time, and I think it would be a wonderful place to stay as a couple.
- I would love to hear women’s stories & how they are making a difference in their communities big or small. - Lana (@lanadobrinskiart) and Arien
- Yay! If you followed along with my social media adventures, you saw my ‘Saskatchewan Sisterhood Spotlight’ features! You can look back and find posts about these women in our social media feeds! I will also be telling more in-depth stories about some of these women in my book. (Yep, I’m writing a book, with the goal of having it available by November 30th. #dreambig)
(This is Lana, who actually asked this question! I met up with her in Tisdale, where she gave me the painting that she created for me. Lana, you're one of the women in your community, making a difference!)
- Which are the best family friendly places to stay in the different small towns? - Sheila (@sheilagmkl)
- The neatest one I came across was Ghost Town Blues in Maple Creek, SK! You stay in old covered wagons! There are big open grassy areas to run around in, and great patios to sit and enjoy a beer or wine at night.
- Find us a bad-ass strong woman settler, and where she settled. Someone who brought her family, worked her land, and made a home. All on her own. God knows there had to be a few! - Angella
- I thought about this challenge often this summer, and it made me question my definition of ‘settler.’ While I didn’t find what many would maybe think of when they think of ‘settlers’ (AKA people of European-descent who came to Canada at the beginning of the 20th century), I found another type of ‘settler.’ Women like Satya in Yorkton, who came to Canada from India (via Portugal). Women like Bernadette in Weyburn, who came to Canada from the Philippines. Women like Catherine in Eatonia, who came to Canada from England. These multicultural women are today’s settlers in Canada.
- I would love to learn about people from different cultures/backgrounds and communities working together. - Tara
- To be honest, I talked to whoever I came across on any given day. But I tended to look at these people as individuals, which was my goal for the summer: to simply talk to people (mostly women) one-on-one about their personal challenges and successes. I didn’t necessarily speak to them about how they fit into their community or how they work together with other members of their community (instead, I asked really personal questions like: ‘what do you struggle with?’ or ‘what lights you up?’ or ‘tell me about your family.’). But I know there is a lot of room to do this same type of trip, WITH a focus on how different cultures and backgrounds are working together. Want to go on a road trip Tara?! :)
- What is the hidden gem/restaurant place in each town? - Michelle
- Great question! I thought this trip would be more about sightseeing and ‘Saskatchewanderer’-type of focus. But it mostly came down to the people! Organizing events, and interacting with hosts, panel speakers, and attendees. The days were FULL. This meant that I usually ate two meals a day: breakfast at the B&B or hotel I was staying at, and supper...I can’t even remember where I ate most suppers. Yikes. But I didn’t have a chance to focus on those hidden gems, which was a bit sad...but one can only do so much, right? :) (that being said, the sandwich I had from the Italian Star Deli in Regina was life-changing (thanks for the recommendation Tiffany!)...it may have been made more fun by the checkout guys that told me to have fun getting high in Bengough...which I did not, just to clarify.)
- I would love to know more fun, and unique places to road trip to in SK! - Lindsay and Jessica
- While there are so many great places in our province, here is a quick list of the places that come to mind:
- Castle Butte (worth the drive!)
- The Qu’Appelle Valley near Regina (beautiful! Katepwa beach is awesome.)
- Beechy Sandcastles (it feels like you’re not in Saskatchewan)
- Lake Diefenbaker (the Riverhurst ferry!)
- Manitou (the springs are awesome)
- Kenosee Lake (the hiking!)
- A “favourite” or memory from each town?! - Michelle
- Whew! There are SO many. While I will cover more of these in my book, here are a few:
- The tunnels in Moose Jaw!
- Carol from Nipawin (this will be in my book!)
- Skydiving in Martensville
- TV interviews in Regina and Saskatoon! (so much fun!)
- Wondering what women entrepreneurs are out there and what are they selling/making and what contributions are they making in their community. How has being an entrepreneur influenced them personally? - Nic
- Oooh, great question! I spoke with many women entrepreneurs, especially at our 15 Sask Sisterhood events around the province. You can catch my recap posts on our Facebook page! But I would say that being an entrepreneur has influenced them in these ways, in general:
- A sense of pride & accomplishment at creating something that they’re passionate about!
- Financial struggles and successes. (and the desire to be honest and open about this)
- Finding balance, and feeling guilt. (family life, self-care, etc.)
- Needing support from other women, and giving support to other women. (we’re not alone)
(These are a few of the amazing entrepreneurs from the Eatonia/Kindersley area!)
- Who is your favourite person you connected with and why? - Megan
- Whew. This is a big question, that I don’t know if I can answer. That seems like a cop out, but it’s true. I met hundreds of people this summer, and they are all awesome for such different reasons. I’ll talk about some of these people in my book though!! :)
- What are the best free activities available throughout the province? - Jenna
- See the answers to question #11! (the Manitou Springs are not free, but Manitou Lake is!)
- What do women in Saskatchewan most value in others? And of course - Who are the most handsome men in Saskatchewan? - Fay
- What women in Saskatchewan most value in others:
- Realness/Honesty (the a-ha moments and realization that we’re not alone in our lives is one of the biggest themes I saw this summer...from divorce to illness to grief to mental health issues to motherhood to sisterhood and more! Someone else has gone through it, which makes us feel less alone.)
- Genuine support: giving and receiving (we can’t do life alone).
- Who are the most handsome men in Saskatchewan:
- I’m still doing research...will need more time. :)
- What are teens, tweens, families needing for emotional and spiritual well being and growth for themselves and their families and schools? What are they doing to thrive? - Deb
- Whew! This is a great question, but I don’t have an anwer. Because I focused primarily on women and their issues (which included but was not limited to their families), I wasn’t able to dig very deep into this. But I can say that a few teens and tweens actually attended our Sask Sisterhood events. I did speak to their Moms (about ‘adult language’ and ‘adult themes’), and this is the what their Moms said: ‘This is great. I want my daughter to learn about real issues. It’s important.’ So that is very cool.
That’s it for now! I hope these answers were informative, funny, and maybe even offered a new perspective. I will be writing much more in my upcoming book (with higher amounts of sass and storytelling), so if you enjoyed this please keep an eye out for my book later this fall!
And if you want to add your own answers, please feel free to do so in the comments below!